Youngsters Jeff Reine-Adelaide and Alex Iwobi continued to train with the first-team squad this morning at London Colney as Arsene Wenger’s side completed their final preparations ahead of tomorrow’s Community Shield fixture against Chelsea.
There is the possibility that either Reine-Adelaide or Iwobi could make the bench at Wembley given the current lack of available attacking options.
Chuba Akpom was absent as he closes in on a loan move to Hull City, whilst Serge Gnabry and Krystian Bielik weren’t with the senior group today. David Ospina trained but might not be fit enough to make the bench, with Emiliano Martinez in line to provide back-up to Petr Cech.
Danny Welbeck and Tomas Rosicky, who both have knee problems, are the only two first-team players currently out injured. Welbeck is is contention to feature against Crystal Palace in a fortnight, whilst Rosicky’s return date is unknown at present.
Alexis Sanchez is set to return to training on Monday, whilst Joel Campbell is not due back until late August after he represented Costa Rica this summer.
Wenger has some difficult decisions to make regarding not just his starting line-up but his substitutes for tomorrow’s game.
He must decide whether to deploy Mathieu Debuchy or Hector Bellerin at right-back, whilst there is also considerable competition for places in the wide positions. Five players from today’s training group will have to be left out of the squad. Ospina, on account of his fitness, may be one, whilst Mathieu Flamini, Calum Chambers and Gabriel are other candidates for omission.
Players in training today: Debuchy, Gibbs, Mertesacker, Gabriel, Koscielny, Arteta, Wilshere, Ozil, Giroud, Ospina, Walcott, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Ramsey, Monreal, Cazorla, Flamini, Chambers, Bellerin, Martinez, Cech, Coquelin, Iwobi, Reine-Adelaide.